Transform your bathroom into an at-home spa oasis with a welcoming wet room design. This innovative layout ditches the traditional tub and shower enclosure for an open, accessible space that promotes relaxation. Read on to learn how a wet room can infuse your bath with a sleek, spa-worthy style.
What is a Wet Room?
A wet room is a bathroom layout that features an open shower area with no glass enclosure or curtain. The floors and walls are completely waterproofed, allowing water to drain away through linear floor grates. This creates a seamless, spacious design with no obstructions.
Wet rooms are common in high-end spas and European-style baths. Bringing this design into your own home bathroom gives it a luxurious, resort-like feel. The open layout also makes wet rooms ideal for accessibility and aging in place.
Benefits of a Wet Room
Installing a wet room delivers numerous advantages:
- Open, spacious layout: With no glass doors or shower curtains, a wet room creates an airy, open bathroom environment. The lack of enclosure makes the space feel larger.
- Improved accessibility: For those with mobility challenges or disabilities, a wet room eliminates obstacles and makes bathing safer. Open access and grab bars can be added seamlessly.
- Easy cleaning: With simple tile walls and floors, there’s no shower door track or enclosure to scrub. Maintenance is quicker with a wet room design.
- Stylish, spa-like aesthetic: The sleek, continuous surfaces and minimalist style brings a relaxing spa vibe into your home. Materials like stone and wood add natural warmth.
- Customization: Wet rooms can be tailored with personalized features like temperature-controlled floors, hydrotherapy body sprays, and more. Make it your own luxury retreat.
Design Elements to Include
When planning your soothing wet room, incorporate these key elements:
The entire wet room must be waterproofed for proper drainage and to prevent leaks and moisture damage. Waterproof membranes and sealants are applied to surfaces like beneath the tile floors and on drywall walls. Using solid surfaces like stone also prevents water penetration.
In place of a standard floor drain, wet rooms have linear drains that span the length of the shower area. These drains efficiently collect water as it sheets across the floor. Multiple drains may be needed for larger layouts.
An open entry without a door threshold facilitates easy wheelchair and walker access. This removes obstructions and tripping hazards.
Comfortable, Non-Slip Flooring
Tile, stone, and poured polymer floors are attractive, waterproof options. Make sure to choose textured, non-slip materials for safety. Radiant heated floors can add luxurious warmth underfoot.
Strategically placed grab bars improve accessibility and provide stability and balance for all users. Go for sleek designs that coordinate with your decor.
Include features like:
- Heated loungers
- Steam generator or sauna
- Rainfall showerhead
- Body spray jets
- Heated mirrors lacking fog
- Towel warmer
- Wireless sound system
These details enhance the therapeutic wet room experience.
Proper ventilation prevents mold and mildew growth. Exhaust fans, operable windows, and climate control manage humidity.
Compliant Electrical Installations
Consult local regulations for required electrical setups in wet areas. GFCI outlets, waterproof lighting, and low-voltage systems may be mandated.
Pick Relaxing Finishes
Wet room finishes should promote serenity while also being water-resistant.
Natural stone like marble, travertine, and slate exude spa style, as do large format ceramic or porcelain tiles. Lay tile in the shower area and throughout the bathroom for seamless uniformity.
Mosaic sheets can provide beautiful accents. Opt for textured tiles with a non-slip finish.
On drywall walls, apply waterproof paint or hanging panels made for wet areas. Alternatively, choose solid water-repellent surfaces like:
- Fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) panels
- Glass tiles or blocks
- Waterproof laminate sheets
Serene Decor Touches
Consider warm, natural wood accents in seating, shelving, flooring and wall paneling. Paint colors in soothing, pale greens, blues, and grays evoke relaxation. Add greenery, soft lighting, and aromatherapy for multi-sensory calm.
Wet Room Inspiration
Here are some stunning wet room designs to spark ideas:
- Mist-like rain showers
- Heated loungers
- Massage body spray jets
- Mosaic tile accents
- Serene gray and blue color palette
- Floating wood shelving
- Wood plank tile floors
- River rock stone walls
- Rainfall and hand-held showerheads
- Concrete and reclaimed wood vanities
- Vintage hardware
- Freestanding soaking tub
- Solid white or light gray color scheme
- Seamless walls and flooring
- Glass partition dividing toilet
- Wood accent wall
- Linear drain
- Frameless glass mirror
- Exposed pipes
- Stainless steel accents
- Concrete floors
- Black metal finishes
- Pendant lighting
- Barn door entry
Making it Work In Smaller Spaces
Don’t think you need a huge, luxurious bathroom for a wet room? These layout tips allow smaller spaces to utilize a wet room design:
- Incorporate glass walls or partitions to separate the wet area from toilet and vanity. Frosted or patterned glass maintains privacy while not fully enclosing the space.
- Build out a corner with flat, low-profile shower niche features. Keeping the floor and walls continuous preserves openness.
- Use space-saving floating vanities and wall-hung toilets. This expands floor space and prevents bulky furnishings from dominating.
- Opt for narrow linear drains along the wall rather than wide square drains in the floor. The smaller grates don’t take up as much real estate.
- Include a multifunction rainfall showerhead that also operates as a hand shower. This saves room by omitting a separate detachable showerhead.
- Strategically place grab bars, towel racks, and sconces on walls to take up minimal space.
- Select streamlined, wall-mounted faucets and minimalist fixtures.This prevents clunky vanities and clutter.
With careful planning, even petite bathrooms can embrace a wet room layout for that soothing spa vibe.
FAQs About Wet Rooms
Before taking the wet room plunge, consider these common questions:
Are wet rooms expensive?
Wet rooms do cost more upfront compared to basic bathrooms. All the waterproofing requires professional expertise and specialty materials. Complex electrical and ventilation systems also bump up the price. But this investment can pay off for increased home value and longevity.
How do I keep floors dry outside the shower area?
Sloping the floors ever so slightly downward toward the linear drain(s) ensures water drains properly. Sharp angles aren’t necessary – a minor 2% grade prevents puddling. This slope should meet non-slip building codes. Adding multiple drains further enhances drainage.
What about mold concerns in an enclosed wet space?
Proper moisture prevention is key. Ventilation systems regulate humidity while fans quickly evacuate steam. Durable waterproof finishes prevent seepage into vulnerable surfaces. Routinely cleaning and disinfecting all areas also inhibits mold issues.
Can I have a tub in a wet room?
Yes, absolutely! Many wet rooms incorporate an inviting soaking tub that complements the spa-like shower zone. Place it near a wall or in a corner to conserve space. Make sure there’s enough structural support for a heavy tub filled with water. Include an anti-slip tub surface and grab bars for accessibility.
How do you separate the toilet in a wet room?
If desired, the toilet area can be divided from the open shower space while keeping an airy, seamless look. Frosted glass partitions, natural wood screens, partial walls, and strategic design layouts can provide separation without fully closing off areas.
Do I need special bathroom fixtures for wet rooms?
Wet room bathroom fixtures should have water-tight connections and durable finishes to withstand moisture and humidity. Seek out labels indicating wet room suitability. Wall-mounted toilets, vanities, and fixtures maximize space.
Bring the Spa Home
A wet room beautifully transforms your bathroom into a personalized, accessible oasis. With strategic waterproofing, safety, and design, you can infuse resort-style luxury into your own home. Relax and soak up the benefits of a welcoming wet room filled with possibilities. Let this innovative bathroom layout wash your stresses away as you enjoy your daily home spa experience.